Personal circumstances, study delay and BSA

If you have experienced personal circumstances that have caused a delay in your study progress, the Board of Examiners must take this fact into account when issuing their study advice.

Personal circumstances

If you have experienced personal circumstances that have caused a delay in your study progress, the Board of Examiners must take this into account when issuing their study advice. As soon as you become aware of a delay in your studies, you should immediately contact your Study Adviser. Together with the Study Adviser, you can formulate an alternative study plan suitable for you.. This way, you can avoid being prevented from studying further because you do not meet the minimum requirements of your study programme.

Personal circumstances that may influence the progress of your studies include illness, a disability or exceptional family circumstances. The BSA-committee will establish the extent to which these circumstances have hindered your studies. If you want the Board of Examiners to take your personal circumstances into account, you have to submit a personal statement and an expert opinion which show in which period and to what extent you were hindered in your studies. If the medical practitioner/expert who is aware of your situation refuses to issue such a statement, you can make an appointment with one of the following:

  • If your circumstances consist primarily of medical symptoms, you can make an appointment with a doctor from the Safety, Health and Environment Department (VGM) at Leiden University. The VGM Department is located in the Poortgebouw, Rijnsburgerweg 10, in Leiden, telephone 071 527 8015. 

  • If you are dealing with family circumstances, you can make an appointment with a Student Counsellor, telephone 071 527 8025/8026. 

Note: If you have an appointment with the VGM doctor, you should print out the Medical Statement, Graduation Fund and BSA form, fill it in and take it to your meeting. Please send both statements as soon as possible, but at the latest before July 15th, to

The Student Affairs Department will then make sure that the Board of Examiners of your study programme is informed of your situation.

Psychological or personal problems 
If you are suffering from psychological or personal problems, you can make an appointment with your study adviser, a student counsellor or a psychological counsellor. They will be able to advise you on what to do. It goes without saying that you are free to decide how much information you share with him or her, and that this information will remain strictly confidential. In this kind of situation, the Board of Examiners may also take your circumstances into account when issuing their final advice, and you may, under certain conditions, qualify for financial support. For more information on these conditions, see the Student Charter.

Other causes of study delay

There may be other causes of study delay, such as:

  • Delayed study progress due to a second study programme, a job or care for your family

  • Incorrect assessment of examinations

  • Unfair treatment by the department 

In these situations, too, you should make an appointment with a study adviser or student counsellor as soon as you encounter study delay in order to discuss whether and how you can avoid being issued a negative study advice.

More information on Study delay and BSA.

Improving your study skills

If your study results are disappointing, we advise you to investigate the underlying cause.
The Psychological Counsellors can help you address study problems and other related problems. This help may consist of training, courses, workbooks, information flyers, computer programmes and individual sessions. You can make an appointment, drop by during open office hours, sign up for training and/or collect an information flyer. It goes without saying that whatever information you provide about your problems will be treated as strictly confidential.

If you doubt your choice of study programme or if you have questions about your study career, please consult the Career counsellors or the study choice information.

Last Modified: 13-12-2016